Long-lasting, extremely straight, high UV-blocked and, therefore, in high demand: special glass tubing for backlights from SCHOTT. With these components, Asia is home to nearly the entire industry.
Glass Tubing Improves the Lives of Monitors
High uv-blocked backlight tubes play an important role in flat screen monitors based on liquid crystals (LCDs). These components for use in backlighting extend the lifespans of lcd monitors quite considerably.
Regardless of whether they are designed for use in televisions, laptops, navigation systems or cell phones, thanks to their thin depth of construction, flat TFT-LCDs (Thin Film Transistor-Liquid Crystal Displays) are gaining ground in nearly all visual electronic applications. However, unlike cathode ray tube systems, these types of flat screen monitors require a background lighting source in order to be able to display an image on the screen. Cold cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFL), also referred to as backlights, that essentially function much like miniaturized neon tubes, perform this task. And just like their larger counterparts, they have a weakness. During operation, CCFL (Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamps) backlights generate UVB and UVC radiation. Over time, this can damage important components inside the monitors. The LGP (Light Guide Plate) located behind the TFT (Thin Film Transition) is primarily made of plastic and reacts quite sensitively. This component is responsible for uniform illumination, brilliance of color and brightness. UV radiation causes the components to turn yellow and, thus, impairs the image quality, brightness and color values.
Breakthrough with new glasses
The latest generation of backlight glass types triples the life spans of TFT-LCDs.
Despite the sober sounding abbreviations, what really stands behind them is a breakthrough in the area of high UVB- and UVC-blocked backlight tubes that doubles the average life span of TFT-LCDs to up to ten years. “These products have enabled us to assume a strong position inside the global market, due to the fact that hardly anyone else is capable of manufacturing glasses with comparable specific characteristics,” emphasizes Dr. Hueber. Glass tubes from SCHOTT meet even the most challenging demands with respect to life span, dimensional accuracy, residual stress and straightness. From a customer perspective, this last trait, in particular, means that processing can be completed cost-effectively. “With a length of 600 millimeters, the curvature of our tubes is only 0.2 millimeters. This means that no retroactive straightening of the glasses is necessary,” explains Wolfgang Zettl, head of production.
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